MONSTERS director Gareth Edwards explains his low budget filmmaking secrets
In a recent interview, Monsters director Gareth Edwards shared his secrets on making the most out of a low budget.
Gareth: If you look at the process of most films, it all begins with a ‘writer’ having an ‘inspiring experience’ somewhere in the world, then deciding to write some of those details down in a script.
Then a producer comes along and raises a lot of money to recreate all those details onscreen, then hundreds of people come along and start hiring and building things to recreate all those details in front of a camera.
I guess we just cut out the middle bit, as the ‘writer’ I was holding a camera the very moment we had the ‘inspiring experience’ and shot it there and then, for free… obviously we had a story.
But in terms of the scene being in a chicken-bus, or a flooded road, we were completely open, whatever details or random events appeared in front of us were the ones that ended up in the film.
When people hear that you ‘wrote’ directed, shot and did the FX yourself, they think you must be a massive control freak, but I don’t think this film could have been more ‘out of control’ if we tried.
I think the way things are supposed to work, is that you ‘behave’ yourself on your first movie, then if people like it then you get to do a slightly bigger budget film where you ‘behave’ yourself again.
Then if people like that, you get to do an even bigger budget film where you have to ‘behave’ even more… then finally, years and years later, you might be trusted enough to have a go at making a film about what you want, the way you want to.
I just figured, screw that, let’s make that film now, if people hate it then at least I’ll know now and haven’t wasted my life trying to climb the ladder…
When we set out to do this, everyone involved agreed that the film wouldn’t be OK, it would either be great, or . . . . . complete article.
Director: Gareth Edwards
Cast: Whitney Able, Scoot McNairy
Six years ago NASA discovered the possibility of alien life within our solar system. A probe was launched to collect samples, but crashed upon re-entry over Central America. Soon after, new life forms began to appear and grow. In an effort to stem the destruction that resulted, half of Mexico was quarantined as an INFECTED ZONE.
Today, the American and Mexican military still struggle to contain the massive creatures... Our story begins when a jaded US journalist (McNairy) begrudgingly agrees to find his boss’ daughter, a shaken American tourist (Able) and escort her through the infected zone to the safety of the US border. Watch MONSTERS from Video on Demand.
Film genuine, quality science fiction story
The sci-fi film "Monsters" reaches the bar set by "District 9," for about $30 million less. Gareth Edwards' directorial debut "Monsters," set for a limited release Oct. 29, manages to pull off a great story, convincing special effects and characters that you care about, all on a mere (rumored) $15,000 budget. The film was released on iTunes a month before its release date; it is available to rent for $9.99.
This is one of those movies where the very beginning has everything to do with the end. "Monsters" is a great journey with genuine moments, yet retains the tension that the overdone, big-budget movies have.
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